Creating a Node XML File in Windows HPC Server 2008 Step-by-Step Guide
Updated: December 18, 2008
Applies To: Windows HPC Server 2008
Creating and importing a node XML file is an efficient way to add compute nodes to your HPC cluster, especially if you will be deploying your compute nodes from bare metal (that is, an operating system will be installed on the compute nodes during deployment). For example, with a node XML file you can specify the computer name (NetBIOS name) that will be assigned to each new compute node during deployment, instead of having that name assigned by the head node according to the order in which the new compute nodes are detected. You can also specify the node groups to which the compute nodes should be added when they become part of the cluster, and information about the location of each compute node in your datacenter. If you will be integrating scriptable power control tools to manage the compute nodes in your cluster, a node XML file allows you to associate a management IP address with each compute node in the cluster (for example, the IP address for the Base Management Controller (BMC) of the compute node). Another advantage of adding compute nodes by importing an XML file is that nodes are approved as they are added to the cluster, eliminating the need to manually assign a node template to them.
This guide provides step-by-step procedures for generating a base node XML file on the head node of your HPC cluster, editing the node XML file to include information about all of the compute nodes that you want to add to your HPC cluster, and finally verifying the node XML file to ensure that it is ready to be imported to your HPC cluster.
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A very efficient way to create a node XML file is to first generate a base node XML file that you can use as a starting point. You can then edit that base node XML file to include all of the information that you need when you add compute nodes to your HPC cluster.
The base node XML file can be quickly generated by using HPC Cluster Manager on the head node of your cluster. To generate the base node XML file, you only need to connect and turn on a subset of the computers that you will be adding as compute nodes to your cluster. Only a subset is needed because you can add all other computers to the base node XML file when you edit it. It is possible to include in the base node XML file all of the computers that you will be adding as compute nodes to your cluster, but this will require turning them all on, and depending on the number of computers this may be impractical, making it more efficient to add the compute nodes when you edit the node XML file.
Because mistakes can be committed while editing the base node XML file, it is a good practice to validate the node XML file against the node XML schema to detect any errors. This guide includes information that helps you to perform this validation.
Sections in this guide
This guide contains the following sections: